The book is a travelogue with an extreme bend towards humor. All the events have been duly repainted with humor. In the book, three friends bored of their daily life decide to travel onto the river Thames for a fortnight.
Jerome K. Jerome is an English writer and humorist. Even though he has plenty of books under his name, he is best known for his book, Three Men in a Boat.
The book is a travelogue with an extreme bend towards humor. All the events have been duly repainted with humor. In the book, three friends bored of their daily life decide to travel onto the river Thames for a fortnight. How the trip goes, what the men do, or how the men wreak havoc all around is primarily what constitutes the book. Along with the humor, the history of the River Thames is well described along with the scenic beauties that pleases visitors and readers alike.
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I have read many travelogues and most of them focus on the attractions, how to get there, where else to go, what to eat and blah. They focus mostly on the technicality, on the pros and cons of the place. Any misadventures may be described and warned against. However, Jerome presented a totally humorous way of doing the same. Instead of saying that a particular stretch of river is dirty he mentions washing their clothes in the river and instead of clothes getting clean, it is the water that does. He presents and unique way of looking at things and his ability of letting things slide rather than get upset upon them and fret for days together.
This book is tempting and exciting to read as almost all of us have faced misadventures while travelling and it gives us a new way to look at them. Instead of grieving or worrying about certain things not going the desired way, it allows one to think that it is alright to laugh at the things and move forward. A lot of literature focuses on the misfortune of live and attracts its audience by the deep sense of grief. Jerome instead preferred to make the audience laugh by presenting some grim situations in a different and humorous way. The book not only is an amazing work of literature, it also leaves the reader with the feeling that laughing over certain thing and moving on is better than grieving and wasting time over it.
If I were to compare it to the society, the three men can well be compared to any group of friends who keep on planning and shunning the idea of a trip. That’s what every college student plans to do and majority of the times never does. In the instances that the groups do go somewhere together, it is the trivial issues that ruin all the fun. The way she talked to me, why did he smoke, why I am supposed to do all the dishes, all these things that make it difficult to enjoy and have fun together. Instead, if we were to take them lightly, not just in a trip but generally in life, many things would be easier, better and more enjoyable.
The book also mentions the craze of visiting tombs and I cannot deny the resemblance in our society. Be it the revered shrines or the graveyards, we keep going about them and fussing about them all the time. Somehow that seems the right thing to do too. With the occupying forces the land has been pretty much turned into a graveyard. And every live soul anticipating the time that coldblooded gunshot an accidental stray bullet would leave them dead, giving everyone else the chance to mourn again and visit the graves. We keep on mourning till it is our turn to fall prey to that bullet.
The book also mentions the dark that surrounds. Sorrow. In the book it is described as a knight finding his way in a dark forest. Successfully. And around us, everyone seems to be in this dark dense forest of sorrow. Frightened and tired. This sorrow, that whenever we try to get over finds its way back to us. Sometimes through a death, many times torture, other times CASO and burning down of our residences. We haven’t found our way out of this forest like the knight which all of us so desperately desire. But are always hopeful that sometime soon we would. A false hope? None of us knows.
The book presents plethora of good humor and is a good read for anyone who loves to read. It can instantly transfer a person from their current setting and location to the river Thames and have fun with the three people in their misadventures. It is a sure shot way to bring a smile onto someone’s face and have a hearty laugh. It makes an amazing read to all kinds of audience.